Several years ago I had my astrology chart done. I know there are many who don't buy into the occult, but I have always been fascinated by energies, and this interests me. One of the things George told me was that I would change direction when I was twenty-seven. When the fire happened, I thought maybe he was a year too late, but the more I think about it, the more I think he was right.
The fire did change my life. And the fire has been the catalyst for the direction I am now taking. But recovery from the fire was at least a year in the making, and it is only now that I am able to look forward, now that I'm twenty-seven.
I have always been a writer. I used to carry around a notebook and write horrible poems that rhymed about teen angst. I wrote a story about Hopper, a frog whose parents were divorced, when I was in fifth grade (at Riverside Elementary), and I was awarded a prize. I was proud. I've taken a dozen or more writing classes. But when I went to college, the life of a writer seemed so uncertain. Politics, and writing about politics, made me happy. But I never left writing behind.
I co-founded a newspaper in college, at The George Washington University, which was fun albeit short-lived. All of my papers are now ash. I worked at the Washington City Paper and worked for a company writing about proposed legislation. After college I went to the University of Denver for a summer to study publishing. I wanted to be an editor. But a short stint in New York brought me to Idaho. I wanted a life focused on family and home. It wasn't a lack of drive. I had that in spades. It was a lack of space. I moved to Boise intent on starting a writing career.
Instead I started teaching. I thought that was the change in direction George had alluded to (even if I wasn't twenty-seven), and I started trying to manipulate my path so that it would change (according to MY plans when I got to this age). I fully expected to go back to teaching, but I didn't. The fire left me without energy, beaten, broken.
But it is also the fire that has given me new life, a path. It has made me a writer once again. And this time, I am solid in where I am, secure in my words. I am not a scared twenty-four year old resisting rejection. I am a confident twenty-seven year old who knows what I have to say matters. I believe in sharing my story, this story. It hasn't been manufactured or forced. It's organic. And authentic.
I'm twenty-seven. And my life is starting.